Blankety Blank tipped for return to the BBC with Bradley Walsh a likely host

A report suggests a pilot will be filmed before the BBC commits to a series.

Bradley Walsh

The classic celebrities-meet-the-public game show Blankety Blank is reportedly being lined up for a return by the BBC, with the ever-popular host of The Chase, Bradley Walsh, tipped to be host.

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The Sun reports that Walsh is in the frame to be presenter for a show that last screened for one year on ITV in 2001 after previously screening for 15 series on the BBC, starting in 1979.

Blankety Blank featured a celebrity panel, one of whom would read out a question with a key word left blank, which the contestant, a member of the public, would try to answer and match as many of the answers of the other celebrities’ guesses as possible.

A TV insider told The Sun: “Blankety Blank was massive for the BBC and revisiting it seemed like a great idea in the current climate.

“Bradley is the favourite to be the new host but bosses behind the reboot also have discussed Paddy McGuinness and Rylan Clark as potential hosts.

“A pilot is being filmed later this year and if it’s a success, it’ll go on to become a new series. Everyone is confident it’ll be a hit and it’s a perfect fit for Saturday night. It’s likely to nab a primetime spot and cash will be pumped into the series if it does go ahead.”

The insider reportedly revealed the presenter was “yet to be set in stone”, but there was “a hunger for fun, family programming and nostalgia seems to be a winner every time”.

Les Dawson
Don Smith/Radio Times/Getty Images

Blankety Blank became a family staple after it premiered on BBC One in 1979, with Terry Wogan as host until 1983. Comedian Les Dawson (pictured) took over from 1984 until 1990. When Dawson left the show it wasn’t revived until 1997, when Paul O’Grady’s alter-ego Lily Savage became host for two series.

The show featured a huge diversity of celebrity panellists, ranging from Dame Barbara Windsor to Sir Ian McKellen, Bernard Manning, Peter Stringfellow and Mollie Sugden.

It has been revived for a number of one-off shows, including Children in Need (2004) and an ITV Christmas special in 2016.

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